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Gov Bello Mourns Dr. Datti, Alh Tofa

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Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State has commiserated with the government, the people of Kano state and the entire Emirates Council over the loss of their two illustrious sons, renowned urologist, Dr. Ibrahim Datti Ahmed, President- General, Supreme Council for Shariah in Nigeria and Alhaji Othman Bashir Tofa, a former Presidential candidate.

In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary Onugwu Muhammed, Governor Bello described the loss of the two elder statesmen as a great loss not only to Kano state but Nigeria in general.

“Dr Datti Ahmed, was a refined gentleman with unquantifiable contributions to the development of education and the Shariah knowledge as a guidance to the Muslim faithful”.

“He will be missed for his wise counselling and his vast knowledge on moral lessons needed for our future generations” he said.

Similarly, Governor Bello expressed shock over the death of a former presidential candidate of the National Republican Convention (NRC) in the 1993 election, Alhaji Bashir Tofa saying his death has no doubt created a vacuum in Nigeria’s political space.

“He was a gentleman politician who believed in service delivery and developmental democracy” Governor Bello said.

He prayed to God to grant their souls eternal rest in Aljannatur firdausi.

The governor also prayed to God to grant their families, the government and people of Kano state and the entire Emirates Council the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss.

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Southern, Middle Belt Leaders grieve over Ezeife’s demise

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The leadership of the Southern and Middle Belt Leaders’Forum (SMBLF) has expressed grief over sudden demise of the former Governor of Anambra State, Chief (Dr) Chukwuemeka Ezeife on Thursday 14th day of December 2023 at the Federal Medical Centre, Abuja. He was 85.
The statement was jointly signed by Chief (Dr.) E.K. Clark for Southern people, Chief Ayo Adebanjo Leader of Afenifere, Chief Dr. Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, President-General, Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, Dr. Pogu Bitrus – President, Middle Belt Forum and Senator Emmanuel Ibok-Essien, FNSE – National Chairman, PANDEF
Thestatemwnt reads, “‘Okwadike’ as he was fondly called was a founding and staunch member of the Southern and Middle Belt Leaders’ Forum; a strong promoter, and an unshaken believer in the unity and progress of Nigeria, based on equity, fairness, and justice.

“We recall that he actively participated in the last meeting of the Forum (SMBLF) in Abuja on Thursday 26th October 2023, where far-reaching decisions were made in the overall interest of the country.

“The Havard-trained economist was a prominent Statesman, a politician of exceptional brilliance, high repute, and integrity. He was a man of firm resolve and typical modesty. Ezeife loved his people and Nigeria with passion.

“We will sorely miss his inspiring personality, brilliant ideas, vibrant contributions, and steadfast solidarity in our pursuit of an egalitarian Nigerian State that would be fair and just to all irrespective of tribe, religion, or political inclination.”

The statement extended its deepest condolences to his family in particular, as well as the Government and people of Anambra State, the Igbo Nation, and Nigeria, which he served dedicatedly.

“We pray the Almighty God ro grant us all the fortitude to bear this irreplaceable loss and for the peaceful repose of the noble soul of our dearly beloved departed Compatriot.

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Unveiling First Hausa Catholic Bishop in History: Mamman Musa’s Extraordinary Journey

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In a historic move set to redefine identities and religious narratives, Mamman Musa, a Hausa man, is on the verge of becoming the first-ever Hausa Catholic Bishop in the Catholic Church. The investiture ceremony, scheduled for December 12, will mark a revolutionary milestone, elevating Mamman Musa into the echelons of the church hierarchy within Hausaland, specifically in Katsina.

At 52, Mamman Musa’s appointment as a bishop heralds a new chapter in Hausa-Catholic relations. His journey into Christianity and priesthood, defying the odds of a predominantly Muslim background where only 1 percent are Christians, resonates with a legacy of resilience and dedication.

Born Gerald Mamman Musa, his family’s conversion to Catholicism traced back to the arrival of the Society of Missionaries of Africa in northern Nigeria in 1934. Mamman’s grandfather became a convert, setting the stage for a generational commitment to the faith. Despite facing hostility and challenges in a region with a religious majority opposing their beliefs, Mamman’s parents continued their Christian devotion.

Emmanuel Musa, Mamman’s father, became a torchbearer for the faith, translating the Bible and Christian doctrines into Hausa. He confronted adversity in the form of societal ostracization and professional limitations but stood firm in his convictions. Similarly, Mamman’s mother, Christiana Asabe, hailing from a family of converts, contributed to their steadfast commitment to Catholicism.

Mamman Musa’s upbringing in Malumfashi, Katsina state, was marked by an immersion in church activities, fostering a love for Catholicism despite being surrounded by a predominantly Muslim environment. His education in Catholic seminaries further solidified his dedication to the church, leading him on a path that eventually saw him excel academically, earning degrees from prestigious institutions globally.

His journey into priesthood and academia culminated in his role as a director at the Centre for Studies of African Culture and Communications in Port Harcourt. Amidst challenges of potential alienation and derogatory terms like “maguzawa,” a disparaging label for Christians in the North, Mamman Musa’s commitment to his faith remained resolute.

In his forthcoming role as a bishop, Mamman Musa acknowledges the weight of responsibility and privilege attached to this historic position. His inclination towards liberation theology, emphasizing the centrality of the poor and marginalized, reflects a commitment to addressing societal issues and drawing inspiration from influential figures such as Gustavo Guitierrez.

As Mamman Musa prepares to assume his role as the first Hausa Catholic Bishop, his journey stands as a testament to resilience, dedication, and a commitment to bridging religious divides while upholding the tenets of his faith.

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Bird of elocution

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Bird of elocution

a bird of elocution

she doesn’t speak in English

she sings it

when she speaks

we hear the ring

of dulcet tones and sound

of rhythms and notes

so ear pleasing

that her voice becomes

a part of the message

she is speaking about

and those in the know

know and they make her

a favorite compere and moderator

of august events

so her smiles beam

screen shines when she appears

to cast the news

and interest fresh and new

greets the viewer

and she speaks as well as she writes

a gift wrapped for the TV station

and the book makers world

her flourish is a story

of increase and lifting

her name is Eugenia

the wife of Abu

a fairy godmother of the arts

etiquette defines her

By Sam Ogabidu

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